Pálava, located in South Moravia, is full of interesting sites and historical treasures. There are many local castles, palaces, ruins, and other fascinating buildings worth seeing, but this is not what we have in mind. This time we invite you to venture a little further into the past and follow the footsteps of mammoth hunters from the dawn of history.
There’s no question as to where you should start your journey - Dolní Věstonice is the best option. Here you can stay overnight, taste local wine and visit a little museum dedicated to mammoth hunters and especially the most famous of Moravia’s women – the Venus of Věstonice.
Meet Venus of Věstonice
The Venus of Věstonice was created sometime in the period between 29 000 and 26 000 BC. The statuette with a height of 11 cm was found with other artifacts (stone tools, animal bones, etc.) by archaeologists lead by Karel Absolon. The museum dedicated to her is worth visiting, even though you will see only a copy of the statuette. The original Venus is not there, it’s stored in the collections of the Moravian Museum in Brno and is exhibited only on special occasions.
As far as we know, at that time, Moravia was inhabited by groups of hunter-gatherers. In Czechia, they were named Pavlovien, after the Pálava village of Pavlov, but archaeologists call them Gravettien. In popular culture, they are often labeled as the “mammoth hunters”, as a reference to a wildly popular book by Albert Štorch, even though they probably rarely hunted mammoths.
Explore the Archeopark Pavlov
The village of Pavlov and the relatively new Archeopark are located a few kilometers behind Dolní Věstonice. If you decide to walk there around the Nové Mlýny reservoirs, don’t forget to stop by the so-called Calendar of Ages at the end of Věstonice, where you can see geological strata deposited over 100,000 years.
Archeopark itself is an exhibition that shows, how the world and life of the „mammoth hunter“ could look like. At first glance, you might be surprised by large concrete bunkers, but that's just the first impression. When you enter, you will find yourself in a completely different world. On over 500 square meters, the indoor exposition presents the history and findings of the local research.
Live with hunters-gatherers
It is dedicated to a world in which ancient Europeans lived, created and perished, around 30,000 years ago. You can explore the original stone tools, familiar and mysterious bone items, jewelry or statuettes. The exhibition also shows how the ancient people hunted, how their everyday life might have looked like, or how they buried their dead.
Upon arrival, you will enjoy a short movie that will take you through this breathtaking era of our European history. The architects, historians, and builders did a great job bringing back the hunter-gatherer's world. In 2016, the Archeopark was awarded the prestigious Building of the Year award.
Enjoy vineyard on every corner
When talking about Palava, it is impossible to forget the local vineyards. Where else to taste better wine, than in the center of South Moravia. We warmly invite you to choose one of the local nature trails and discover wine history.
Mikulov Wine Nature Trail is a 20 km trail suitable for hikers and cyclists. It introduces you to the wine history of the Pálava region.
Mikulov Trail is designed for cyclists, is 82 km long and leads through the Mikulov wine region and the famous Lednice-Valtice area.
Moravian Wine Trail is a 280 km long cycle route designed for anyone who wants to know the history of wine and vineyards in detail. It will lead you through all Moravian wine-growing sub-regions.
Experience adventures in a region of sun and wine
Palava has something to offer to everyone. If you want to relax, move, imagine life as a hunter-gatherer, drink wine, learn about the history of the Czech Republic and more, Pálava has got you covered. With its high-quality network of hiking trails, it is ideal for organizing various teambuilding meetings, whether connected to history, nature or even an interactive outdoor game. And let’s be honest, the amazing wine cellars are a great benefit for team building activities.